Saints vs. 49ers: A Rivalry That Ain’t Dead Yet

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One of the NFL’s most recognized offensive “gurus” of that Era, the late San Francisco coach Bill Walsh was respected and feared throughout the league, but there were not many teams that he reciprocated those same feelings. But — the New Orleans Saints were one of those few select teams that he reserved praise for, however.

Walsh was on record for more than one occasion stating that the winner of the divisional showdowns between the two teams should be looked at as the ‘Super Bowl favorite’ out of the NFC. As we noted back at the beginning, the Saints did not have a good record against those Walsh teams (Walsh was 13-5 vs the Saints), but rest assured, the 2 games against each other were games Walsh knew his team was going to be in for a physical showdown.

Critics of those 49ers teams often labeled them as a “finesse” team (hence, the Ali/Frazier comparison for you boxing fans), but anybody that watched the Saints vs. 49ers games in those days knew that there was not a “soft” team on the field.